Saturday, 2 January 2010

New Year nonsense

Both the BBC and Belfast Telegraph have carried reports about the fact that Belfast City Council did not stage a New Year's Eve celebration in the city centre.  In its editorial the Telegraph asked:
Would it be too much to ask the city authorities to consider a more fitting celebration in Belfast next year?  We have the facilities at the beautifully-restored harbour area, and we have the people of Belfast and elsewhere who know how to party.
The truth is that there are extra costs associated with staging an event over the holiday period and with the cost of entertainers, staging, lighting, security and advertising, an New Year's Eve event would cost Belfast ratepayers at least a quarter of a million pounds.  Moreover past experience shows that such events only draw around 5,000 people.  I notice that the Telegraph editorial made no mention of the cost to ratepayers.


  1. Tourism Ireland spends millions of pounds promoting Northern Ireland around the world. And then when people turn up here to spend their money, we don't have any entertainment for NYE. At the very least there should have been fireworks. With perhaps a live broadcast and music from one of the local radio stations. It wouldn't have cost too much.

    Visitors who did make it to Belfast will pass on the word - Belfast is not worth visiting around New Year's Eve.

    Sometimes you have to spend some money to get more back. We should have something next year supported by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board.

  2. Perhaps you might read the column by Gail Walker in today's Belfast Telegraph. She deals with the issue in a very fair and impartial way.